Thursday, January 21, 2010

Where does the composer get the idea of starting a composition? In the Mamlok concert last week it was pretty clear that she gets a lot of her starting ideas from nature noises, among which bugs and birds are prominent. She signals as much in many of her titles, like Grasshoppers, In My Garden, etc.

It is less clear with composers who do not give a verbal clue, Mozart, for example. I am at the moment completely fascinated with the centrality in his works of the French horn. When one stops to think that the horn in question is not a modern horn, but the very distinctive natural horn on which every single pitch is colored specifically it boggles the mind.

We have become far too inured to neutralized pitch. To paraphrase a song I recently heard: "Just because you can play all the chromatic tones with equal efficiency doesn't mean you should."